February is the Month of the Holy Face.
Special Days in February include
- Feb. 2nd: The Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple. The Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Candlemas – The blessing of the candles
- Feb. 3rd: The Feast of St. Simeon, the God Receiver and the Patron over St. Simeon Skete
- Feb. 8th: Commemoration of the Flight into Egypt, Massacre of the Innocents (Seven Sorrows)
- Feb. 11th: The Commemoration of the Vision of Bernadette at Lourdes
- Depending on the date for Easter
- Septuagesima followed by The Jonah Fast may be in February (see details below)
- Nineveh 90. Christians of all denominations are being asked to add additional prayers and fasting during these 90 days of repentance and reparation as was done in Nineveh to restore God’s favor for their land. St. Simeon Skete is ongoing daily in these practices. It is our practice at the skete to follow what Nineveh 90 asks already in our daily schedule. We say 4 Rosaries a day, daily Mass, Prayer Rope Offices etc. However, we will endeavor to maintain this special time set apart for extra prayers for our land. It is a necessary and valuable occasion for all Christians to be in solidarity through prayer.
- Feb. 14th: Feast of St. Valentine
- Sexagesima Sunday. Begin Novena to the Holy Face.
- Feb. 22nd: Feast of St. Joseph of Arimathea
- Quinquagesima Sunday:
- Feast of the Holy Face (Feast of Reparation) Shrove Tuesday: Holy Mass 7:30 PM
- Ash Wednesday
While the normal service schedule will be adhered to at St. Simeon Skete, the fast will be observed by refraining from food (and drink if they wish) from midnight until Vespers (or sunset) during these three days. If, for health reasons you are unable to do without all food during the day, we encourage you to at least refrain from something i.e. meat, fish, and dairy products during the fasting period. At the skete, fasting is considered abstaining from an otherwise normal activity for the purpose of spiritual pursuit. Usually people abstain from food, but may also abstain from other activities – in example – refraining from the media i.e. news, etc.
This is a special fast at St. Simeon Skete because life at the skete embodies the experience of being in the belly of the beast where one must live in the “darkness” of faith. – where one seeks answers; but is turned back to live with the questions that make the answers possible; where every good answer simply makes the question vibrate all the more. Just as supply cannot be separated from its source; the answer cannot be separated from its question – nor the question from the answer.
King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.